Are the Arab countries turning to move into China’s orbit? How will the U.S react to China’s growing presence in the Arab world? Will Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf countries be in the BRICS be in the The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO)?
Video: Are the Arab countries moving into China’s orbit?
In this episode of Kalima Horra, the discussion program hosted by George Galloway on Al Mayadeen television, our Co-Editor Keith Bennett discusses recent developments in the relations between China and the Arab countries and their background. In response to George’s opening observation that the tectonic plates are shifting in the region, Keith draws attention not only to the success of President Xi Jinping’s visit to Saudi Arabia last December, which saw the first summit meetings between China and both the Gulf Cooperation Council and the League of Arab States, but also to the long history of relations between China and the Arab world, including China’s solidarity with the Palestinian revolution from its inception.
In response to a question as to how China can balance its relations with, for example, Saudi Arabia and Iran, Keith notes that China does not establish relations with any nation at the expense of a third country and that it always stresses the common interests of the developing countries, which it considers more important than their differences. Under such circumstances, it is becoming more difficult for the United States to pick off the Arab countries one by one. The US pursuit of a New Cold War, against China, Russia, Iran and some other countries. Keith notes, is serving to increase the coordination among the developing countries, with ever greater interest being expressed in such bodies as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the BRICS grouping.
Keith was joined in the studio by Shahid Dastgir Khan, a former student leader in Pakistan and now a human rights lawyer in Britain, and Joseph Robertson, the Strategic Director of the Orthodox Conservatives group; and by video link by Dr. Alessandro Arduino, Principal Research Fellow at the Middle East Institute of the National University of Singapore and an Associate at the Lau China Institute of King’s College London, and by Dr. Einar Tangen, a Senior Fellow at China’s Taihe Institute, based in Beijing.
Dr. Tangen said that, due to its rogue state behavior, the United States had worn out its welcome in the Middle East. Its colonial arrogance and lecturing of others does not work anymore. And Shahid Khan recalled that Pakistan-China friendship was something he clearly remembered right from his childhood. Pakistan, he noted, had played a part in helping draw Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) closer to China.
The full discussion is embedded above.